DIRECTORWalker, Lucy
TITLECountdown to Zero
DISTRIBUTORMagnolia Pictures
RUNNING TIME89 minutes

This sweeping 2010 documentary addresses the global issues surrounding nuclear weapons and fissile materials. Making effective use of video clips and interviews with policy experts, world leaders, and members of the public, the film presents the case for nuclear disarmament and control of fissile materials. Major areas of concern are the acquisition of fissile materials by terrorists, the proliferation of nuclear weapons and technology by undesirable nations, and the accidental launch of nuclear weapons by the U.S. or Russia. It also reviews the U.S. record of accidents involved in handling nuclear weapons and the system for command and control of those weapons. The film focuses on highly enriched uranium (HEU) as the fissile material most likely to be used by terrorists in constructing a nuclear weapon. It also points at the network developed by Pakistan’s A.Q. Khan as a major source of nuclear weapons proliferation. Proposals to eliminate nuclear weapons and control fissile materials conclude the film, along with a warning of consequences should the world fail to take such action. The Countdown to Zero website associated with the film offers links to press kits, a photo gallery, opportunities to buy the DVD, and ways to get involved in global efforts to eliminate nuclear weapons.

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